CAMDEN — In the midst of its temporary closure due to COVID-19 protections, the Camden Public Library is marking a most unusual National Library Week, April 19-25, by ramping up efforts to unite the community virtually.
“In my 30-plus years of library service, this is a National Library Week unlike any I could’ve ever imagined,” said Library Executive Director Nikki Maounis, in a news release. “While it is certainly true we have shifted how we operate this National Library Week, the why – bringing people together to read, connect, and discover – remains as strong and steady as ever.”
Online offerings include Story Times and Crafts with Children’s Librarian Miss Amy, whose videos have been shared as widely as Virginia, Utah – and even New Zealand, according to the Library.
Individuals can also have a face-to-face “Lunch with a Librarian” in a virtual room, including Monday’s “Walsh History Center Hour,” inviting research requests.
Lifelong learning programs and special readings are also being livestreamed.
Details can be found at librarycamden.org.
National Library Week is an annual celebration that highlights the valuable role libraries and staff play in transforming lives and strengthening communities, including during times of crisis.
“This library first opened its doors on Main Street during the Great Depression. Today, we are also facing an uncertain future,” Maounis said. “Because of the needed restrictions on public gatherings, we are now without so many of the ways we generate funds. We must now have raise more than $50,000 by June 30, just to cover basic operating expenses.”
To face this challenge, the library is hosting a seven-day #WeLoveCPL fundraising drive during National Library Week, celebrating the uniting power of the library. Donations will directly cover the voids left by these extraordinary circumstances. Donors can give from the comfort of their homes by computer or mobile phone at librarycamden.org/donate or by mail to the “Camden Public Library Fund” at 55 Main Street, Camden, ME 04843.
“Your help will directly benefit the people of our community as we navigate these unusual days and grow stronger together,” Maounis said.